Many figures of history appear in episodes of “Blackadder”, from Richard III to Queen Elizabeth and the Red Baron. A lesser-known historical figure is Field Marshal Douglas Haig, who commanded divisions of the British Army during World War I.
History is divided as to whether Haig was a skilled commander or a callous figure who sent thousands of soldiers to their deaths, but the Haig that appears in âBlackadder Goes Forthâ falls into the latter category. He saw model soldiers sweeping a fictional battlefield with a brush and dustpan, and then informed Edmund that the best way to avoid going to the front lines is to put his underwear on his head and sticking pencils in his nose – a trick Edmund once used.
Geoffroy palmer, OBE who played Haig in “Blackadder”, has been a prolific actor in British television, radio and film for over half a century. A staple of popular episodic series like âThe Avengers,â âDoctor Who,â and âFawlty Towers,â Palmer rose to larger roles in âA Fish Called Wandaâ and âThe Madness of King George,â as well as a turn opposite Judi Dench in the feature film “As Time Goes By”. His credits in the 1990s and 2000s expanded to include “Tomorrow Never Dies” and “Paddington”.
Palmer, who was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in 2004, is dead at the age of 93 on November 5, 2020.